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(2011), PG-13 [R-13*] (130.8min)

Final Score
Analysis Date
Date Posted
Influence Density
December 28, 2011
December 30, 2011

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(While the Scriptural references are certainly not subjective, my commentary may be and sometimes is somewhat subjective.)

If Scriptural references appear, the full text appears at the end of the Summary / Commentary.

(2011), PG-13 [R-13*] ... is R-equivalent in everything but Sexual Immorality and Murder/Suicide

Production (US): Mimran Schur Pictures. Lions Gate Films, MSP, Solaris Entertainment, Filmtribe Production
Distribution (US): Lions Gate Films
Director(s): Gavin O'Connor
Producer(s): Lisa Ellzey, John J. Kelly, Jamie Marshall, David Mimran, Greg O'Connor, Michael Paseornek, Jordan Schur, Anthony Tambakis
Screenplay by: Gavin O'Connor, Anthony Tambakis, Cliff Dorfman
Story: Gavin O'Connor, Cliff Dorfman
Cinematography/Camera: Masanobu Takayanagi
Music: Mark Isham
Film Editing: Sean Albertson, Matt Chesse, John Gilroy, Aaron Marshall
Casting: Randi Hiller
Production Design: Dan Leigh
Art Direction: James Donahue
Viewed on Lions Gate Home Entertainment DVD

Tommy Conlon (Tom Hardy) is a hero. And a deserter. He saved the lives of some drowning soldiers as he was on his way out of Iraq. He changed his name to Riordon, his mother's name, then appears on the doorstep of his father, Paddy Conlon (Nick Nolte) as he was "passing through." Paddy was not a good father for either Tommy or his brother Brendan (Joel Edgerton). Paddy was a drunk. He is now at the 1000th day sober but the scars of the past still cloud any chances of sincere forgiveness from his boys.

Tommy just stopped by his dad's house to let his dad know he was going to go into fighting and wanted his dad to train him -- something Paddy was good at with a lot of experience. Paddy had trained Tommy from the age of five in wrestling and Tommy had become the state champion. Undefeated.

Brendan, an ex-UFC fighter now a high school physics teacher with two beautiful daughters Rosie (Lexie Cowan) and Emily (Capri thomas) and devoted wife Tess (Jennifer Morrison), holds a deep grudge against his younger brother Tommy. But the bank holds more against Brendan than Tommy. Brendan is a couple months away from foreclosure on his Pennsylvania house. On his way to a moonlighting bouncer job Brendan fights one smoker to earn more money in two hours than he could in a month as the $9.00 per hour bouncer job. The smoker was in the parking lot of a strip club and although Brendan won, the school would not tolerate one of its teachers moonlighting at sleaze clubs and coming to school with fight marks on his face. So Brendan is suspended. Without pay. Now he has all the time in the world to fight for money. But Tess initially stands in the way.

Both brothers are getting back into fighting. Tommy for philanthropy and Brendan by need. But no one who has not already seen or heard about this film would be able to predict the final scenes which I will not spoil.

When a film can implant such detail in my mind that I can write a discussion like the one above from memory, it has to do a good job of telling its story. The writers and filmmakers have prepared a package with a very well written story that flows exceptionally well and contains all the pieces and parts necessary to enable the viewer to care about the characters. But it also contains enough of all the pieces and parts to make it R-13.

The content of this film is R-equivalent in everything but Sexual Immorality and Murder/Suicide. And in the sexually immoral content it is only 4 points out of 12 above the R-equivalence threshold. In almost every sense this film is R-equivalent and truly earned its R-13 label. It even "feels" like a R.


Following are brief discussions of the content per individual content investigation area. As always the Findings section of this report, the heart of the CAP Analysis Model, is the best source for discovering the full accounting of the content of this film.

Wanton Violence/Crime (W) - 24 out of 100
Besides the crime of an active soldier deserting his unit, the only content applicable to this investigation area is boxing violence. A lot of it. And some of it is brutal. Sadistically brutal, the very property of violence that makes it "catching." In many verses, Proverb 16:29 in particular, God warns of this property of violence, that violence can lead one into a path that is not good. Hundreds of years after God warned us of violence, four professional public health agencies jointly plagiarized God's Word by warning that viewing violence, especially by the young, can, among other things, lead to real life violence and lead the viewer to believe that violence is an acceptable means of settling conflict. God has warned us of violence. Four professional public health agencies have warned us. But do we listen?

Impudence/Hate (I) - 18 out of 100
Thirty-one times someone speaks profanity. [Col. 3:8, Eph. 4:29] One of them by a high school teen which, by example, invokes Luke 17:2. Massive tattoos are displayed by a number of characters. [Lev. 19:28] Both Tommy and Brendan are indeed disrespectful of their father. Each of them show hatred of their father and of each other. [Rom. 12:18]

Sexual Immorality (S) - 59 out of 100
Except for nudity and intercourse, the sexually immoral content of this film is quite typical of PG-13s: dressing to maximize the female form and/or skin exposure; camera angle and/or pose to force the viewer on private parts; women as toys/ornaments; adults in underwear; anatomical references; more. [1 Thess. 4:1 - 7]

Drugs/Alcohol (D) - 54 out of 100
Smoking. Drinking. Drunkenness. Abuse of prescription drugs. It is all there except possession and/or consumption of illegal drugs. This extent of the display and demonstration of alcoholic beverages (and smoking) is poison to the moral well-being of our youth who are more likely to emulate that which is displayed onscreen.

A 2002 study by the American College of Physicians (ACP) revealed that adolescent exposure to drinking in and as entertainment undeniably leads to abuse of alcohol among underage viewers. The finding entitled Relation Between Parental Restrictions on Movies and Adolescent Use of Tobacco and Alcohol reports that of 4544 youths from grades 5 through 8 of fifteen Vermont and New Hampshire middle schools (90% of the youths were under fourteen years old) only 16% were completely restricted in their entertainment diets. Within the ACP study population, the prevalence of having tried alcohol without parental knowledge was

  • 46% for those with no viewing restrictions
  • 16% for those with partial viewing restrictions
  • four percent for those with complete viewing restrictions. [Eph. 5:18]

    There is nothing to say that viewing smoking in and as entertainment does not carry the same danger of influence as viewing drinking. Actually, the same matter of behavior influence applies to any behavior demonstrated in and as entertainment, including good behavior.

    Offense to God (O) - 26 out of 100
    Eighteen times someone abuses God's name. Three of those times were with the four letter expletive. [Deut. 5:11] Abuse of His name is blasphemy and includes any use of His name other than with respect, reverence or responsible discussion and in praise and prayer, including that ever-popular three-syllable sentence with His name trailing it. So many people let His name slide off their tongues that so many others who see no visible consequences in abusing his name emulate what they hear. That invokes Romans 5:19. God will not hold guiltless anyone who uses His name in vain.

    Murder/Suicide (M) - 100 out of 100
    There are no murders or suicides noted on the entire 130.8 minutes of the program.



    If needed to focus or fortify, applicable text is underlined or bracketed [ ] or bold. If you wish to have full context available, the Blue Letter Bible is a convenient source. If you use the Blue Letter Bible, a new window will open. Close it to return here or use "Window" in your browser's menu bar to alternate between the CAP page and the Blue Letter Bible page.


  • Prov. 16:29 A violent man enticeth his neighbour, and leadeth him into the way that is not good. [The issue is the violence, the 'way that is not good' no matter how "small" or "fantasy" or "justified" the violence might seem, and its "leading" effect on the observer. "A violent man" can be any character of any age, any gender, human or not in the act of committing (demonstrating in the case of entertainment) violent behavior/action whether for good or evil OR the violent behaviors/actions themselves. Such exposure can and does embolden the viewer into aggression, especially youth. It took years for the American professional health community to finally affirm, probably without knowing it, that which God told us in 1 Cor. 15:33 below. See also Joint Statement on the Impact of Entertainment Violence on Children: Congressional Public Health Summit for more information. Their findings include:
    --> Children who see a lot of violence are more likely to view violence as an effective way of settling conflicts. Children exposed to violence are more likely to assume the acts of violence are acceptable behavior.
    --> Viewing violence can lead to emotional desensitization towards violence in real life. It can decease the likelihood that one will take action on behalf of a victim when violence occurs.
    --> Entertainment violence feeds a perception that the world is a violent and mean place. Viewing violence increases fear of becoming a victim of violence, with a resultant increase in self-protective behavior and a mistrust of others.
    --> Viewing violence may lead to real life violence. Children exposed to violent programming at a young age have a higher tendency for violent and aggressive behavior later in life than children who are not so exposed.
    Further, God speaks darkly of violence 56 times in the Old and New Testament of the KJV.]
  • Col. 3:8 But now ye also put off [rid yourself of] all these; anger, wrath, malice [kakia: ill-will, desire to injure, wickedness, depravity, evil, trouble, not ashamed to break laws, etc.], blasphemy [blasphemia: impious and reproachful speech injurious to divine majesty], filthy communication [aischrologia:foul speaking, low and obscene speech] out of your mouth.
  • Eph. 4:29 Do not let any unwholesome talk come out of your mouths, but only what is helpful for building others up according to their needs, that it may benefit those who listen.
  • Lev. 19:28 Do not cut your bodies for the dead or put tattoo marks on yourselves. I am the LORD. [A body piercing cannot be made unless there is cutting involved. And "dead" in "for the dead" is nephesh which includes "seat of the appetites" and "seat of emotions and passions" and "activity of the will."]
  • Rom. 12:18 If it be possible, as much as lieth in you, live peaceably with all men.
  • 1 Thess. 4:1 - 7 Furthermore then we beseech you, brethren, and exhort you by the Lord Jesus, that as ye have received of us how ye ought to walk and to please God, so ye would abound [excel] more and more. For ye know what commandments we gave you by the Lord Jesus. For this is the will of God, even your sanctification [sexual purity], that ye should abstain from fornication [which includes promiscuity]: That every one of you should know how to possess his vessel [control his/her body] in sanctification and honour; Not in the lust of concupiscence [desire for that which is forbidden, craving; promiscuity], even as the Gentiles which know not God: That no man go beyond [trangress] and defraud [take advantage of] his brother in any matter: because that the Lord is the avenger of all such, as we also have forewarned you and testified. For God hath not called us unto uncleanness, but unto holiness. ["Fornication" is porneia, meaning illicit sexual intercourse a) adultery, fornication, homosexuality, lesbianism, intercourse with animals etc., b) sexual intercourse with close relatives; c) sexual intercourse with a divorced man or woman. In other words, sexual immorality which includes promiscuity. Be master of your body and urges, not a slave to them. Be not a seeker of any manner of sexually-oriented imagery or behavior outside of a monogamous heterosexual marriage. For any sexual contact (including sight and sound), conduct or activity outside of a monogamous heterosexual marriage is sinful.]
  • Eph. 5:18 Do not get drunk on wine, which leads to debauchery. Instead, be filled with the Spirit. [Since "drunk" is methusko {meth-oos'-ko}: to intoxicate; make drunk; to get drunk; become intoxicated, "wine" can be any intoxicating substance including illegal drugs or abuse of prescription drugs. The issue is do not abuse the body by intoxicating it [1 Cor. 6:19]. Though it is not a sin to drink, it is a sin to get drunk OR to influence to get drunk OR to drink in defiance such as underage drinking.
  • Deut. 5:11 Thou shalt not take the name of the LORD thy God in vain: for the LORD will not hold him guiltless that taketh His name in vain. [Vain is shav {shawv}: emptiness, nothingness, vanity, such as in slang or profanity. With or without the four letter expletive, the use of God's name in any way other than respect, reverence or responsible discussion and in praise and prayer is in vain. That includes the popular three syllable sentence with His name trailing it AND the misuse of Jesus' name or title even if as a euphemism. So, trying to excuse such expressions with "I was talking TO God/Jesus when I said that" or It's just words" or "I was acting" will not work with Him. Nor will "Everybody says that" excuse the sin of using His name in vain. If everyone on the planet who has ever drawn a breath used His name in vain, it would still be a sin to do so. If no one ever did, it would still be a sin to do so. Whether we believe it or not. Whether we like it or not. Whether we care or not.]
  • Rom. 5:19 For just as through the disobedience of the one man the many were made sinners, ...

    Selected Scriptures of Armour against the influence of the entertainment industry

  • Jer. 37:9 This is what the LORD says: Do not deceive yourselves, thinking, 'The Babylonians [the destroyers from within] will surely leave us.' They will not!
  • Ps. 12:8 The wicked freely strut about when what is vile is honored among men [when enough people continue to defend what is vile, embrace it, enjoy it, want it, submit to it.]
  • Col. 2:8 Beware lest any man [by his influence] spoil you through philosophy and vain deceit, after the tradition of men, after the rudiments of the world, and not after Christ.
  • 1 Cor. 15:33 Be not deceived: evil [kakov: of a bad nature, not such as it ought to be] communications corrupt good manners.
  • Rom. 5:19 For as by one man's disobedience many were made sinners, so by the obedience of one shall many be made righteous.
  • Jude 1:4 For there are certain men* crept in unawares [secretly slipped in among us], who were before of old ordained to this condemnation [whose condemnation was written about long ago], ungodly men, turning the grace of our God into lasciviousness [a license for immorality], and denying the only Lord God, and our Lord Jesus Christ. [*men: anthropos {anth'-ro-pos}, generic, a human being, whether male or female]
  • Matt. 25:40 And the King shall answer and say unto them, Verily I say unto you, Inasmuch as ye have done it unto one of the least of these my brethren, ye have done it unto me.
  • Luke 17:2 It were better for him that a millstone were hanged about his neck, and he cast into the sea, than that he should offend one of these little ones. [Offend: skandalizo {skan-dal-id'-zo} - scandalize; to entice to sin; to cause a person to begin to distrust and desert one whom he ought to trust and obey; to cause to fall away.]
  • Ps. 119:133 Order my steps in thy word: and let not any iniquity have dominion over me [let no sin rule over me].
  • John 14:15 If ye love me, keep my commandments.
  • 1 Thess. 5:22 Abstain from all appearance of evil. ["Evil" includes all things that are sinful.]


    As always, it is best to refer to the Findings/Scoring section -- the heart of the CAP analysis model -- for the most complete assessment possible of this movie.
    (The objective heart of the CAP Analysis Model, independent of and insulated from the Summary / Commentary section.)

    Warrior (2011) CAP Thermometers

    Wanton Violence/Crime (W) - 24 out of 100
  • boxing violence of varying intensities, repeatedly, some brutal
  • active soldier going AWOL - desertion

    Impudence/Hate (I) - 18 out of 100
  • 31 uses of profanity, once by a teen
  • one use of the most foul of the foul words
  • massive tattoos, frequent
  • son's disrespect of father, repeatedly
  • adult tantrum
  • son's hatred of father, repeatedly
  • brother's hatred of brother, repeatedly

    Sexual Immorality (S) - 59 out of 100
  • dressing to maximize the female form and/or skin exposure
  • camera angle and/or pose to force viewer on private parts, repeatedly
  • adult in underwear, repeatedly
  • innuendo re: intercourse
  • anatomical reference, repeatedly
  • public display of affection in high school
  • women as toys/ornaments, repeatedly

    Drugs/Alcohol (D) - 54 out of 100
  • smoking
  • drinking, repeatedly
  • prescription drug abuse
  • booze, including at a child's birthday party
  • drunkenness

    Offense to God (O) - 26 out of 100
  • 18 abuses of God's name, three of them with the four letter expletive
  • mockery of God, repeatedly
  • mano cornuto

    Murder/Suicide (M) - 100 out of 100
  • none noted

    Interested parties, send us your proposal. Your link will appear on each new analysis report prepared during the desired period and, once placed on a page, will not be removed.

    There are some in the entertainment industry who maintain that 1) violent programming is harmless because no studies exist that prove a connection between violent entertainment and aggressive behavior in children, and 2) young people know that television, movies, and video games are simply fantasy. Unfortunately, they are wrong on both accounts." And "Viewing violence may lead to real life violence." I applaud these associations for fortifying 1 Cor. 15:33. Read the rest of the story. From our years of study, I contend that other aberrant behaviors, attitudes, and expressions can be inserted in place of "violence" in that statement. Our Director - Child Psychology Support, a licensed psychologist and certified school psychologist concurs. For example, "Viewing arrogance against fair authority may lead to your kids defying you in real life." Or "Viewing sex may lead to sex in real life." Likewise and especially with impudence, hate and foul language. I further contend that any positive behavior can be inserted in place of "violence" with the same chance or likelihood of being a behavior template for the observer; of being incorporated into the behavior mechanics and/or coping skills of the observer. In choosing your entertainment, please consider carefully the "rest of the story" and our findings.

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    * CAP Equivalence to MPAA Rating Scale:
    Please note our new manner of indicating a film's Motion Picture Association of America (MPAA) rating in comparison with the CAP equivalence such as "PG-13 [R-13]." The first term is the Motion Picture Association of America's (MPAA) rating. The second term [in brackets] indicates that which the film earned under the CAP analysis model. In the example, "PG-13 [R-13]" indicates the MPAA rated the film PG-13 but the film earned a CAP final score in the scoring range earned by R-rated movies in the comparative baseline database. Other comparative terms used might be "PG [13-PG]", "G [PG-G] or even 'PG-13 [PG]" as was the case for Alien vs Predator. I doubt there will ever be a "G [R]" used, but only time will tell. The CAP analysis model is Rock-solid. The MPAA is not.

    The current CAP to MPAA** nomenclature is:

    For G rated Films with
    G equivalence: G
    PG equivalence: PG-G
    PG-13 equivalence: 13-G
    R equivalence: R-G<
    For PG rated Films with
    G equivalence: G-PG
    PG equivalence: PG
    PG-13 equivalence: 13-PG
    R equivalence: R-PG
    For PG-13 rated Films with
    G equivalence: G-13
    PG equivalence: PG(13)
    PG-13 equivalence: PG-13
    R equivalence: R-13
    For R rated Films with
    G equivalence: G-R
    PG equivalence: PG-R
    PG-13 equivalence: 13-R
    R equivalence: R
    For NR rated Films with
    G equivalence: G-NR
    PG equivalence: PG-NR
    PG-13 equivalence: 13-NR
    R equivalence: R-NR
    ** G, PG, PG-13 and R are registered trademarks of the Motion Picture Association of America (MPAA).

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